Psalm 107:17

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 17. Fools because of their transgression, and because of their iniquities, are afflicted. Many sicknesses are the direct result of foolish acts. Thoughtless and lustful men by drunkenness, gluttony, and the indulgence of their passions fill their bodies with diseases of the worst kind. Sin is at the bottom of all sorrow, but some sorrows are the immediate results of wickedness: men by a course of transgression afflict themselves and are fools for their pains. Worse still, even when they are in affliction they are fools still; and if they were brayed in a mortar among wheat with a pestle, yet would not their folly depart from them. From one transgression they go on to many iniquities, and while under the rod they add sin to sin. Alas, even the Lord's own people sometimes play the fool in this sad manner.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 17. Fools. There is nothing more foolish than an act of wickedness; there is no wisdom equal to that of obeying God. --Albert Barnes.

Verse 17-20. Fools because of their transgression, and because of their iniquities, are afflicted. Their soul abhorreth all manner of meat (they are so sick that they can relish, take down nothing,) and they draw near unto the gates of death, they are almost in, they were on the brink of hell; what course must be used for their cure? Truly this, He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions. No herb in the garden of the whole world can do these distressed creatures the least good. Friends may speak, and ministers may speak, yea, angels may speak, and all in vain; the wounds are incurable for all their words; but if God please to speak, the dying soul revives. This word is the only balm that can cure the wounded conscience: he sendeth his word and healeth them. Conscience is God's prisoner, he claps it in hold, he layeth it in fetters, that the iron enters the very soul; this he doth by his word, and truly he only who shuts up can let out; all the world cannot open the iron gate, knock off the shackles, and set the poor prisoner at liberty, till God speak the word. --George Swinnock, 1627-1673.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 17., etc. A Rescue from Death, with a Return of Praise. --R. Sibbes' Works, Vol. 51; Nichol's edition.

Verse 17-21.

  1. The distress of the sick.
  2. Their cure by the Great Physician.
  3. Their grateful behaviour to him.

--W. Romaine.

Verse 17-22. A Visit to Christ's Hospital.

  1. The names and characters of the patients -- "fools"; all sinners are fools.
  2. The cause of their pains and afflictions -- "because of their transgressions", etc.
  3. The progress of the disease -- "their soul abhorreth all manner of meat"; and, "they draw near onto the gates of death."
  4. The interposition of the physician -- "then they cry", etc., Ver. 19-20.

    1. Note, when the physician comes in -- when "they cry", etc.
    2. The kind of prayer -- a cry.
    3. What the physician did -- "saved", "healed", "delivered."
    4. How this was effected -- "He sent his word", etc.
  5. The consequent conduct of those who were healed; they praised God for his goodness. They added sacrifice to this praise, Psalms 107:22 . In addition to sacrifice the healed ones began to offer songs -- "sacrifice of thanksgiving." They added a declaration of joy -- "Let them declare his works with rejoicing."